Friday, March 14, 2008

Record Number of Buffalo Killed

It's official: with 200 more buffalo sent to slaughter today, the herd at Yellowstone National Park, 4700 strong before winter, will soon be reduced by 1214, the toll of this winter's hunt and slaughter. This is a record number of Yellowstone buffalo killed in a season. And that number will rise. Many have tried to stop the slaughter, including the Humane Society of America, but to no avail.

From a letter written by a buffalo advocate:

“Dear people in charge of killing our nation’s last wild bison. (Our bison, not yours.) Please read and heed the letter below. I have written you, Dr. Zaluski [Montana Dept. of Livestock] , you, Suzanne Lewis [superintendent of Yellowstone], and also the governor of Montana about my outrage and heartache concerning this unwarranted and immoral slaughter. None of the three of you has bothered with the courtesy of a reply, in fact at times emails have not even been accepted. This is not the way government employees should conduct their duties in a democracy. Perhaps you do not know, although I cannot imagine that you don’t know, the thrill for people visiting Yellowstone to see the bison there in great numbers in their natural habitat. Should they step across park boundaries, what of it? Artificial park boundaries are the intruders, not the bison. I must tell you that it appears that all of you have completely sold out to the cattle interests. Whether or not that is true, that is the appearance, and the Montana Department of Livestock and all of you above appear to the rest of the country to be a bunch of rowdy and out of control cowboys. Is that the image you wish to project to the rest of the nation? Each of you that wears the park service emblem with the bison on it should at least have the good grace to remove those patches if you cannot ensure the safety of the bison. Otherwise you are also guilty of hypocrisy. I am sorry to be so harsh, but I have been begging for the lives of the bison for years, and you do not hear. Please hear the cries of the bison, and the people who love them. Thank you.”

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